The history of the Elysee brand dates back to 1920, when the Swiss watchmaker Jacques Beaufort founded his own production called Elysee in a small town near Le Bémont. A year later, the first watch model was created at the factory. It was a very high quality women's watch made of pure gold with precious stones.
In 1960, one of the leading German jewelry manufacturers, Firma Harer, located in Goldstadt Pforzheim, buys the Elysee brand. The new management decides to keep the direction, and the production continues to produce mechanical watches in a gold case. After 31 years, in 1991, the Elysee trademark is bought by a businessman from Düsseldorf (Düsseldorfer Geschäftsmann) - Reiner Seume. From that moment on, the Elysee brand began to develop rapidly. There was a change in the logo, a significant expansion of the product range, and the main focus was on the German market. Since 2000, the company's products have been sold throughout Europe, and since 2015, Elysee watches can be bought in more than 30 countries around the world.
In today's review, I will talk about quartz watches produced by Elysee. We are talking about Elysee Rally Timer I - 80537.
Packaging and delivery
The Elysee Rally Timer I quartz watch comes in a fairly modest package. The top white cardboard dust jacket, which has no information on it, closes the box made of textured black cardboard.
Opening the top cover, on a black cushion, inside a pimply cellophane bag, we see the watch Elysee 80537. The same bag contains a quick user manual in German.
The ELYSEE logo is embossed on the inner surface of the top cover by embossing in silver letters.
In general, I would call the package bundle very modest.
Despite the relatively modest case diameter, which is 44 mm, the Elysee 80537 watch can hardly be called small. This is due to the thickness of the case, which in this model is as much as 14.54 mm. The watch case is made of black painted stainless steel with IP coating. This is an ionic coating with an intermediate hypoallergenic layer. The weight of the watch is 108 grams.
The Elysee Rally Timer I – 80537 features a non-rotating black bezel with a countdown scale with red markings from 15 to 0. The top of the dial is protected by a sapphire crystal that we all know is extremely scratch resistant. This type of glass has a hardness of 9/10 on the Mohs scale, second only to diamond, but unfortunately high hardness also means high brittleness.
Under the glass is a black dial. The hour markers are quite large, almost every mark has an accompanying Arabic numeral. Silver-white hour and minute hands, red second hand. I want to make a reservation right away that the second hand is designed for chronograph operation, while on the dial there was a place for two additional, small dials that allow you to measure exact periods of time using the built-in chronograph. The measurement time can reach one hour, and the accuracy is 1/20 second. The hands and markers have a luminescent coating (SuperLuminova), that is, they are able to emit visible light, due to which the watch has good readability even in the dark.
Of course, on the dial there was a place for the Elysee logo, and for the name of the model "Rally Timer I", and for information that this model was made in Germany.
The chronograph pushers and crown have an unconventional location: they are located above the upper lugs. The chronograph start button is painted red, the reset button is painted in the color of the case, it is black. Button presses are crisp. The black crown has a knurling pattern, due to which it is well fixed with fingers. The whole appearance simply screams that the watch was designed with the participation of the masters of the rally sport, for the implementation of accurate measurements of time intervals.
The back surface is tightly protected by a steel cover, which contains technical information. Fixation is carried out with six screws.
The heart of the watch is the Miyota 6S20 movement. According to the specification, the crown of this movement has three positions:
- Neutral position.
- Date adjustment. It is important to note here that setting the date between 21:00 and 01:00 is highly undesirable.
- Setting the time and chronograph (in the case of a chronograph, we are talking about resetting the pointers to the zero position).
As mentioned earlier, the Miyota caliber 6S20 is equipped with two buttons:
- Starting and stopping the chronograph.
The declared error of the Miyota 6S20 was no more than + -20 seconds per month. A 399 battery or its analogue SR 927 W is used as a power source. These batteries can provide a battery life of up to four years, which is a very worthy result.
The leather strap has a classic buckle closure. On the inner surface of the strap is the proud inscription "Echtes Leder", which means "genuine leather" in German.
Ease of use
I have no complaints about the operation of the mechanism. The readability of the main dial is at a decent level. Large hour markers and Arabic numerals in 5-minute increments make it easy to read the current time. In this regard, the Elysee Rally Timer I is doing well, but the current date is quite difficult to read, and this is due to the fact that the aperture (date window) is located between the marks "20" and "25" and partly overlaps the number "5". In general, everything merges, so it is unlikely that it will be possible to immediately fix your eyes on the current date.
When using a chronograph, it may be difficult to read the information on the small dial with a chronograph minute hand and the small dial with a chronograph seconds hand. True, only at a certain position of the hour and minute hands. It would be nice if this watch model had the function of retracting the hands.
While the chronograph is running, the small second hand measures precise time intervals for the first 30 seconds, after which it stops at the home position. Accordingly, further measurement accuracy is carried out in seconds and minutes.
Here I want to note that the watch is certified to 100WR, that is, it has water resistance up to 10ATM, and this tells us that with Elysee Rally Timer I you can not only take a shower or walk in the rain - with this watch you can safely swim in the pool or in water bodies, plunging under water with a mask and snorkel.
General impressions and conclusion
Elysee Rally Timer I - 80537 is an unusual and interesting watch with a sporty design inspired by the memories of the masters of car racing. Polished case made of high-quality stainless steel, chronograph pushers and crown located at the top, stylish, specially marked bezel and ultra-precise quartz caliber. The watch does not just display the time, it is not afraid of diving under water and allows you to keep an accurate countdown using the chronograph second hand.